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Split captaincy cannot work in our culture: Kapil Dev | Cricket News

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NEW DELHI: “An MNC cannot have two CEOs”, said former India skipper Kapil Dev on Friday, making his stance clear on the raging debate over whether the national cricket team should go for split captaincy.
Ever since Rohit Sharma guided Mumbai Indians to a fifth IPL title, a debate on split captaincy has gathered momentum with several former players suggesting that the opener be handed the leadership of at least the T20 side. Virat Kohli currently leads India in all three formats.
“In our culture it is not going to happen that way. In one company you make two CEOs? No. If Kohli is going to play T20s and he is good enough. Let him be there. Even though I would like to see other people coming out. But it’s difficult,” said Kapil at the HT Leadership Summit which was held virtually.

“Our 80 per cent, 70 per cent of the team across formats is the same team. They don’t like captains having different theories. It may bring more differences between the players who look up to the captain.
“If you have two captains, players might think he is going to be my captain in Tests. I will not annoy him.”
The 61-year-old recently underwent an angioplasty after suffering a heart attack.

Talking about the art of fast bowling, the 1983 World Cup-winning former skipper said fast bowlers opting for too many variations saddens him.
“I am not happy with fast bowlers (these days). The first ball cannot be cross seam. Players in IPL realised that swing is more important than pace. Sandeep (Sharma), who bowled 120 kph, was tougher because he was moving the ball,” he explained.
“Bowlers have to understand it’s not the pace, it’s the swing. They should learn but are running away from art. T Natarajan was my hero of IPL. Young boy was fearless and bowling so many yorkers,” the legendary all-rounder said referring to the two Sunrisers Hyderabad pacers.

Kapil feels variations are a waste if one doesn’t know how to swing the ball.
“Keep your wrist straight, hold the ball seam-up. Whenever the ball moves, Test matches become important. Wasim, Botham, Willis, Hadlee. McGrath, look how good he was.
“The art of swing bowling should come back. Learning the knuckle ball and all is fine. If you don’t know how to swing the ball, everything is a waste,” said the great all-rounder.
However, the battery of pacers that India possesses now pleases Kapil immensely.

“I read somewhere that Lara said he (would) rather face Kapil Dev. Our fast bowlers are brilliant.
“Look at Shami, Bumrah. As a cricketer, it gives me a lot of happiness to say that today we depend on our fast bowlers. Our bowlers are capable of taking 20 wickets in a match. We’ve had spinners – Kumble, Harbhajan, but today no country would like to say ‘give them bouncy wickets’.”
He also appealed to the ICC to ensure Test cricket doesn’t die in the age of T20 cricket.

“If it (Test cricket) dies, I would say ICC have done the worst thing… Let us not let it die… Yes cricket has changed. People around the world only want to play IPL, BBL and tournaments like that…
“I would say IPL has given us strength. What used to be county cricket, every player used to play there (in England) but today IPL is giving the same benefit to us as the players are coming and playing in India.
“…Don’t just think about T20 or IPL, you have to look after first class cricket, Tests and ODIs. Yes, the money making factor is there but we should not forget our tradition. Tennis for example, we still have Wimbledon played on grass,” said Kapil.
He also added that whoever wins the upcoming India-Australia series, the team should go on to win the World Test Championship.


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Barca should have sold Messi, says interim president | Football News

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MADRID: Barcelona‘s interim president Carlos Tusquets feels the club should have cashed-in on Lionel Messi during the summer transfer window.
Messi was heavily linked with a move to Manchester City and sent a recorded delivery (Burofax) letter stating his intention to leave. He later said the decision was due to being disillusioned with the direction the now former board had taken the club.
Ex-Barca president Josep Maria Bartomeu resigned in October rather than face a vote of no confidence, with Tusquets taking temporary charge until January’s elections.
“Economically speaking, I would’ve sold Messi in the summer window,” Tusquets told RAC1 radio station.
“Both in terms of what you save on the wage bill as well as the money you make, it would’ve been desirable. But this is something the coaching staff have to consent to and that’s not my place.
“La Liga are setting salary limits at the moment and this would’ve helped on that front.”
Messi’s current contract expires in June, when he is expected to leave for free and on Wednesday former Barca team mate Neymar spoke of his desire to link up with the Argentine again.
“What I want most of all is to play with Messi again, to be able to enjoy him once again on the pitch,” he said after his club PSG’s 3-1 Champions League win against Manchester United.
“I want to play with him next year, for sure. We have to do it next season.”
Tusquets conceded that scenario was unlikely to transpire at the Nou Camp, where the purse strings have been tightened following the COVID-19 crisis.
“If he (Neymar) became available on a free transfer then maybe we could think about signing him,” he said.
“Without making sales, there’s no money for new signings unless the new president has incredibly deep pockets.”


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New Zealand vs West Indies: Kane Williamson’s gesture towards Kemar Roach wins over internet | Cricket News

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HAMILTON (New Zealand): New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has become the flag-bearer for ‘Spirit of Cricket‘, and his latest gesture towards Windies pacer Kemar Roach has taken the internet by storm.
New Zealand and West Indies are currently squaring off in the first Test of the two-match series. However, before the start of play on the opening day, Williamson embraced Roach as the latter lost his father Andrew Smith recently.
Windies Cricket posted a photo on their Twitter handle in which Williamson can be seen hugging Roach. As soon as the photo was posted, many users commented as to how Williamson needs to be appreciated for how he approaches the ‘Gentleman’s Game‘.

Both New Zealand and West Indies players also wore black armbands on the opening day in honour of Roach’s father.
“On behalf of CWI and the West Indies cricket team, I offer condolences to Kemar and his family back home. Losing a loved one is never easy and we want to offer our full support to Kemar during this very difficult time. We got the news as we prepared for the Test match here and the players and team support staff all got together and offered tremendous support,” Windies team manager Rawl Lewis said in an official release.
Half-centuries from Tom Latham and skipper Kane Williamson proved crucial for New Zealand as they kept the West Indies bowlers at bay on the opening day of the first Test here at Seddon Park on Thursday. At stumps, New Zealand’s score read 243/2 with Williamson and Ross Taylor at the crease. While the skipper was unbeaten on 97, giving him company was senior campaigner Taylor on 31.
Skipper Williamson also completed 1,000 Test runs at Seddon Park. He joined Taylor as the only cricketers with 1,000 or more runs at the venue.



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Surreal experience to represent the country: Natarajan on making ODI debut | Cricket News

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NEW DELHI: Pacer T Natarajan on Thursday said it was a ‘surreal experience to represent the country’ after making his ODI debut in the third game against Australia at the Manuka Oval in Canberra.
The speedster from Tamil Nadu gained popularity in the latest edition of Indian Premier League where he was labelled as the ‘yorker machine’. Natarajan played for Kings XI Punjab and bagged 16 wickets in as many games in the 13th edition of the cash-rich league.
His performance in the IPL handed him an India call-up. He was first included in the shortest format squad and later on added as back-up in the ODI side by the BCCI. This decision was taken as pacer Navdeep Saini complained of back spasm.
“It was a surreal experience to represent the country. Thanks to everyone for your wishes. Looking forward for more challenges,” Natarajan tweeted.
India skipper Virat Kohli handed the cap to the 29-year-old bowler before the match. In his debut game, he returned figures of 2-70 in his ten overs including a maiden. He bagged two crucial wickets of Marcus Labuschagne and Ashton Agar and derailed Australia’s run-chase.
The debutant got support from Shardul Thakur as he clinched three wickets.
India registered a 13-run win in the final ODI and opened their account in the ODI Super League while Australia took the series 2-1.
Both the sides will now lock horns in the three-match T20I series, beginning Friday.Luck was on India’s side to begin with as Kohli won the toss for the first time in the series and decided to bat. While the top-order failed to fire in unison, the middle-order rose to the challenge and both Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja played match-winning knocks of 92 and 66 respectively to guide India to 302/5.
Kohli himself played a knock of 63 runs. The addition of Shardul Thakur, Natarajan, and Kuldeep Yadav also rejuvenated the bowling in the third ODI as the side was finally able to take wickets at regular intervals. For the first time in the last six ODIs, the Men in Blue also managed to take a wicket in the powerplay overs. Aaron Finch played a knock of 75 runs, while Glenn Maxwell and Aston Agar tried their best to take Australia over the line. But in the end, Kohli and the boys managed to hang on to register a win.


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